JSP – Something for Everyone
There was something for everyone at a special family service on a showery Sunday morning in September, to mark the next stage of our Jesus Shaped People project, taken by Canon Gordon Dey. The scaffolding at the east end seemed to him like a giant visual aid – the church is a building site, and we are all a work in progress!
The reading was Eph. 3:14 onwards, where Paul writes of his prayers and longings for the church in Ephesus (the readings are always on the back of the pew slip so we can read them at home).
So Gordon began an open mike time by asking us what are our longings – here is a summary of the responses;
Reaching out to the community, particularly the young, in Burley, Bradford … and Zimbabwe; be welcoming to outsiders; support events which bring churches together; join forces with those who wish to halt climate change; more all-age worship (like today, with something for everyone); encourage people in prayer.
A number of people shared from the front what house groups had meant to them. All ages took part in JSP, and there was a group specially for the young people, who wish to continue. They appreciated talking with people of their age about Christian things, but also valued hearing views from a mix of ages; also different perspectives on the Bible, studying the Bible in more depth, getting to know people with different opinions – and biscuits!
Members of the adult groups enjoyed sharing good and bad experiences, getting to know Jesus the man better, a closer sense of fellowship, and a chance to be honest about our faith, and deepening and developing it. A number were apprehensive at first, but found the experience very rewarding.
The choir boys and girls sang the anthem, ‘Fairest Lord Jesus’, and the song ‘Jesus, be the centre’. A good number of families were present, and the children and young people, in numbers that must have challenged the space in the church lounge, had their own session. They considered their own spiritual journeys as they produced prayer bookmarks, footprints and paper chain people illustrating the importance of working together and sharing our gifts and talents.
The showers abated by the end of the service, and so the bouncy castle was put to good use, and we all appreciated an excellent bring and share lunch.
Paul & Irene Fowler